Technology Transfer & Innovation Support

Industry 5.0: Towards more sustainable, resilient and human-centric industry

Entry date: 04/02/2021

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The EU’s recovery requires the acceleration of the twin green and digital transitions, so that we build a more sustainable and resilient society and economy. Industry is among the key drivers of this dual transition. The report “Industry 5.0” published today recognises the power of industry to achieve societal goals beyond jobs and growth to become a resilient provider of prosperity, by making production respect the boundaries of our planet and placing the wellbeing of the industrial worker at the centre of the production process.

Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said:

The new concept of Industry 5.0 could not come at a better time. Many European industries are reinventing themselves, adapting to the new COVID reality, increasingly embracing digital and green technologies to remain the solution provider for all Europeans. Now is the time to make workplaces more inclusive, build more resilient supply chains and adopt more sustainable ways of production.

The report describes the main building blocks of the Industry 5.0 approach, lays out the main benefits for workers, as well as for industry itself, and provides a mapping of ongoing and finalised research and innovation projects that are pertinent to Industry 5.0.

Key findings include:

  • In order for industry to continue to bring prosperity to Europe, it must now become the accelerator and enabler of change and innovation. Industry 5.0 contributes to the technological update needed for industry to affirm its purpose as a solution-provider for our society and as an attractive employer for young talents in search of a purposeful professional life.
  • Digitalisation provides industry unprecedented opportunities. Digital technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) or robotics allow radical workplace innovation, optimising human-machine interactions will capitalise on the added value human workers bring to the factory floor. By developing innovative technologies in a human-centric way, Industry 5.0 can support and empower, rather than replace, workers; we increase industries’ resilience and make it more sustainable.
  • Greening the economy is the other side of the same coin. The “Green Deal” will be successful with European industry taking a strong leadership role. The common environmental goals can only be achieved by incorporating new technologies and rethinking the production processes in respect to the environmental impacts. Industry must lead by example in the Green transition.
  • A transformed industry will also have a transformative impact on society. This is especially true for industry workers, who may see their role changed, requiring new skills. The transition to Industry 5.0 will require action in a whole range of areas.

This report marks the beginning of a co-creation process with all relevant stakeholders, including social partners at EU, national, regional and local level to provide a course of action to make a sustainable, resilient and human-centric industry- industry 5.0 a reality.